Sydney - Controversial new rules taking anonymity away from sperm donors have frightened off the locals and forced Australian fertility clinics to source supplies from the United States, according to a report in the Sunday Telegraph.
In the 12 months since the law was changed so that children reaching 18 could track down their biological fathers, there has been a 90-per-cent fall off in local donors.
Professor Michael Chapman, head of IVF Australia, a major fertility clinic, told the paper that the nation now had only around 50 donors.
Under the new rules, each donor is only allowed to create five families, and donors are required to be over 21 and under 38, making supplies very scarce.
Local fertility clinics have begun sourcing sperm from the US, where donors seem less troubled by the new regulations because the distance means they are less likely to be traced.
The new laws may inadvertently have turned some women away from fertility clinics and towards self-help measures.
The internet has globalized sperm donor ship and there has been a spate of do-it-yourself guides like American author Louise Sloan's popular "No Man? No Problem! Knock Yourself Up."//DPA